Boise, Idaho (AP) Idaho lawmakers voted to prohibit the public display of anti-gay hate speech and other bigotry.
Republican State Sen. Mark Holmberg, a Boise Republican, sponsored the bill.
The legislation now goes to the House of Representatives.
The legislation prohibits people from wearing “anti-gay” clothing or displaying signs to advocate against marriage equality, or to display “gay pride” flags or “gay rights” bumper stickers.
The bill also prohibits anyone from posting a message to social media that encourages “sexual orientation discrimination, sexual violence, or harassment.”
It also bans anyone from “making a public display or display to the public of hate speech or other bigotry.”
It also prohibits people who “knowingly promote, support, encourage, encourage others to promote, promote, or promote a person’s own bias or bigotry against a specific class or group of people.”
The bill also makes it a crime to distribute hate literature or materials that include the word “gay” or “lesbian” or the word, “gay.”
“We are going to stand against this type of hate that is so harmful,” Holmberg said.
“I hope that this will show that there are other voices that will stand up against this.”
The measure passed with a voice vote, with no Democrats voting.
The Idaho Human Rights Coalition and the Idaho Equality Alliance opposed the legislation, saying it could chill free speech.
“We have seen how the hate speech bill that passed in Montana was used to censor people of color and people who speak out against discrimination,” said Kim Sallis, director of government affairs for the Human Rights Campaign, which represents LGBTQ rights groups.
“It’s time for Idaho lawmakers to stand up for our rights, and to pass the bill that Idaho will not be able to pass in its current form.”
The Human Rights Act, which is now being considered in the state House, was passed in 2015 after a year of hearings.
It was passed unanimously in the Idaho House and Senate.